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Good sounding commercial 1/4" four track 7.5 ips tapes

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  • Good sounding commercial 1/4" four track 7.5 ips tapes

    Our goal is to get tapes that are as close to 1/4" two track 15/30 ips original master tapes as possible. However there are some commercially released 4 track 7.5 ips gems out there and we want to know what they are.

    My selections are
    1) Frank Sinatra "At the Sands"
    2) Harry Belafonte "At the Carnegie Hall"

    to start...

  • #2
    Are we making allowance for the inevitable increased noise of 4 track 7 1/2 ips tapes? If so, there are lots of good sounding tapes, but the noise is never really comparable to 2 track 15 ips tapes.
    SP-10 MKII table with custom power supply designed and built by Peter Noerbaek with an SME 3012R with Dyna XV-1S cartridge, VPI Avenger table with rim drive and JMW -12-3D arrm with Lyra Etna SL cartridge, ARC Ref 3 phono stage, Otari MX-55 tape deck, Ampex 350 repros, Roon Nucleus Plus server, PS Audio DSJ DAC, ARC Ref 6 pre, ARC Ref 75 amp, JBL 4345 speakers with a pair of Def Tech Ref subs.

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    • #3
      I really do want to get on the R2R mini-bandwagon, but it's hard to see past the current software problems: (1) absurdly shallow pool of available tapes, (2) very high prices for "new" releases. It's hard to see R2R as a music lover's bandwagon, rather than an equipment-nostalgia or antiquarian bandwagon.

      But I love the sight of those big reels, really I do . . . . There's a place in my heart for one of those Otari units, or maybe even a Studer, even if they are gigantic.

      When things scale up a bit and someone shows me a real selection of quality R2R tapes priced maybe at $80-100, with a decent selection of performances from the past 4 years, maybe that'll do the trick.

      That's my story, and I'm sticking to it at least until the next time I visit an audio show and hear Rowland electronics pushing R2R through Joseph Audio loudspeakers . . . at which time I'll probably re-think the whole business, right?

      Dynavector XX-2MKII, VPI JMW 10.5i, VPI Aries, VPI SDS, ModWright PH-150 Reference Phono, Sony HAP-Z1ES server, McIntosh MR80, McIntosh C2300, McIntosh MC352, Vandersteen 5A, PS Audio P10, Bright Star Audio Rack of Gibraltar. Cables: Shunyata Cobra Ztron IC, PS Audio Statement AC, Synergistic Research AC, Harmonic Tech Silver Phono, Cable Research Labs Silver IC, Audioquest Gibraltar bi-wire.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Ki Choi View Post
        Our goal is to get tapes that are as close to 1/4" two track 15/30 ips original master tapes as possible. However there are some commercially released 4 track 7.5 ips gems out there and we want to know what they are.

        My selections are
        1) Frank Sinatra "At the Sands"
        2) Harry Belafonte "At the Carnegie Hall"

        to start...
        I wish I could add to this list, Ki. While I can play 7.5 ips on my tape deck, it has to be 1/4" 2-track.

        I am looking forward to seeing what others mention to add to your list though.

        Dre
        **************************************************
        Every day is a good day to play analog.
        - 12" 33-1/3 RPM or 45 RPM vinyl
        - 10.5" 15ips or 30ips tape
        **************************************************
        Every day is a good day for live music.
        **************************************************

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Goheelz View Post
          I really do want to get on the R2R mini-bandwagon, but it's hard to see past the current software problems: (1) absurdly shallow pool of available tapes, (2) very high prices for "new" releases. It's hard to see R2R as a music lover's bandwagon, rather than an equipment-nostalgia or antiquarian bandwagon.

          But I love the sight of those big reels, really I do . . . . There's a place in my heart for one of those Otari units, or maybe even a Studer, even if they are gigantic.

          When things scale up a bit and someone shows me a real selection of quality R2R tapes priced maybe at $80-100, with a decent selection of performances from the past 4 years, maybe that'll do the trick.

          That's my story, and I'm sticking to it at least until the next time I visit an audio show and hear Rowland electronics pushing R2R through Joseph Audio loudspeakers . . . at which time I'll probably re-think the whole business, right?
          The economics are tough to get to that price point. IIRC, the old R2R albums were about double the price of a vinyl album ($8 vs $4) back in the '60's. These were 7.5ips 4 track stereo (that is tapes recorded in both directions) 1/4" tape, duplicated at 16 times real speed. The 15ips 2 track tapes currently being released are also on 1/4" tape. However, 15ips is twice the speed and 2 track is twice as wide. So the raw tape cost is 4 times as much as the old tapes, assuming that the price of tape has not increased by more than inflation (which I am pretty sure it has, since there are only 3 tape manufacturers in the world, AFAIK). The labor cost is much higher, since the tapes are recorded in real time, not 16x, and the reverse side is not being recorded simultaneously, so that adds another factor of 2, so 32x the labor cost in recording, assuming the scale of production is the same (which it is currently not). Quality control is currently much higher than prerecorded tapes done back in the '60's (I have lots of those, too). So I don't know whether one can get the other labor costs down to the same relative cost as the old tapes. Royalties are another cost issue, unless the majors go into tape production.

          Currently new quality vinyl sells for $30 or so per record. I would guess in quantity, the price of a 15ips tape would be 4 times for tape and another 4 times for the labor (total of 16x, or about $480 for an album of 2 reels (about what the retail is now for Tape Project or Acoustic Sounds). Maybe one could knock it down to 8 times, if things are automated and the price of tape goes down. I would love for a two reeler to be $240.

          Larry
          Analog- VPIClassic3-3DArm,SoundsmithZephyrII+MiyajimaZeroMono, 2xAmpex ATR-102,Doshi3.0 BottleheadPhonoPre,Herron VTPH-2A
          Dig Rip-Pyramix,IzotopeRX3Adv,Mykerinos,PacMicroModel2
          Dig Play-mchNADAC, LampiPac, Roon, HQP, Oppo105
          Electronics-Herron 360Pre,CJ MET1mchPre, Cary2A3monoamps
          Speakers-AvantgardeDuosLR,3SolosC,LR,RR
          Other-512Engineer/Marutani Symmetrical Power, ArtKelmGround1, AudioDiskVinylCleaner,AirTightRecordFlat, Scott Rust Interconnects,
          Music-15KRecs(90%classical),1KR2Rtapes,50TBrips

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Ki Choi View Post
            Our goal is to get tapes that are as close to 1/4" two track 15/30 ips original master tapes as possible. However there are some commercially released 4 track 7.5 ips gems out there and we want to know what they are.

            My selections are
            1) Frank Sinatra "At the Sands"
            2) Harry Belafonte "At the Carnegie Hall"

            to start...
            Hi Ki,

            My best old R2R albums (4track stereo) are from the Barclay-Crocker series, which released about 400 albums starting in the late '70's to mid '80's when they went under. They were copied at slower speeds (4x IIRC) and all were dolby B encoded except for a few that were dbx II encoded. I definitely get the best sound from these using a custom dolby B decoder that Steve Koto (ironbut on the web) built for me, based on the dolby B professional machine. There are some great RCA's - the Belafonte at Carnegie Hall and the Belafonte at Carnegio Hall Volume II are both fine. My copy of the RCA Arnold Guitar Concerto with Julian Bream is also excellent. There are a fair number of Columbia and DGG classical tapes that are quite fine - much better than their vinyl versions. My London tapes are generally not as good as the vinyl counterparts. Don't have many non classical titles - think I have about 400-500 of those albums and a handful of 2 track 7.5ips stereo.

            Larry
            Analog- VPIClassic3-3DArm,SoundsmithZephyrII+MiyajimaZeroMono, 2xAmpex ATR-102,Doshi3.0 BottleheadPhonoPre,Herron VTPH-2A
            Dig Rip-Pyramix,IzotopeRX3Adv,Mykerinos,PacMicroModel2
            Dig Play-mchNADAC, LampiPac, Roon, HQP, Oppo105
            Electronics-Herron 360Pre,CJ MET1mchPre, Cary2A3monoamps
            Speakers-AvantgardeDuosLR,3SolosC,LR,RR
            Other-512Engineer/Marutani Symmetrical Power, ArtKelmGround1, AudioDiskVinylCleaner,AirTightRecordFlat, Scott Rust Interconnects,
            Music-15KRecs(90%classical),1KR2Rtapes,50TBrips

            Comment


            • #7
              Mentioned these before: 7-1/2 ips/2 track

              Bob and Ray Stereo Spectacular
              Bang, Baroom and Harp

              Maybe if we're lucky, Chad will do BBH on 15 ips tape.

              Add to that Gaite Parisienne (LP = LSC 1817) with Fiedler on RCA.

              All are very early RCA Living Stereo tape and good chance they were real time dupes.
              Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
              Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
              ________________________________________

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              -Lyra Atlas SL, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
              -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
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              Comment


              • #8
                Wow, I'm not even sure where to start. I have several hundred original commercial/factory recorded 7.5 ips 4-track reels. There are a LOT of these that sound fabulous. The Magtec/Stereotape titles are especially good. And for the classical music lover, the Barclay-Crocker series is also terrific.

                Just a very small handful of 7.5 ips 4-track tapes I think sound great:

                Dave Brubeck - Time Out, Time Further Out, Time Changes
                Miles Davis - Kind of Blue, Miles Smiles, Sketches of Spain
                Ella Fitzgerald - all the Verve Songbooks

                Allman Brothers - Brothers and Sisters, Road goes on Forever
                Grateful Dead - Anthem of the Sun
                Gordon Lightfoot - Gord's Gold
                Fleetwood Mac - FM, Rumours
                Emerson Lake & Palmer - ELP, Tarkus, Fanfare
                Steven Stills - 1, 2, Manasas
                David Crosby - If I Could Only Remember my Name
                Moody Blues - just about all!

                honestly I could go on, and on, and on...

                i think almost ALL of these sound great, and this is just a portion of the ones I have




                TAPE: Studer A807, A810; Revox B77 MkII; Tascam BR-20; Technics RS-1700; Pioneer RT-707, RT-909
                VINYL: Pioneer PL-50LII/Benz LP-S MR/ModWright PH 9.0; Denon DP59-L/Dynavector 20xH
                DIGITAL: Bryston SP-3, MacMini > Oppo Sonica/Pioneer N-50
                SPEAKERS: B&W Nautilus 800, Pioneer DSS-9
                AMPS: Cary SLP-05/Sunfire Signature 600, Pioneer SX-1980

                Comment


                • Sgood@verizon.net
                  [email protected] commented
                  Editing a comment
                  We're any of the titles you mention put out on 2 track 7.5 that you know of? Would love to find a few moody blues reels if they're out there.

                • Skylab
                  Skylab commented
                  Editing a comment
                  No, no 2-tracks of any of those that I know of. There were precious few commercial 2-track tapes back in the day. And most were earlyish.

              • #9
                TAPE: Studer A807, A810; Revox B77 MkII; Tascam BR-20; Technics RS-1700; Pioneer RT-707, RT-909
                VINYL: Pioneer PL-50LII/Benz LP-S MR/ModWright PH 9.0; Denon DP59-L/Dynavector 20xH
                DIGITAL: Bryston SP-3, MacMini > Oppo Sonica/Pioneer N-50
                SPEAKERS: B&W Nautilus 800, Pioneer DSS-9
                AMPS: Cary SLP-05/Sunfire Signature 600, Pioneer SX-1980

                Comment


                • El Magnifico
                  El Magnifico commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Very nice collection, Sky !

                • TheBoogeyDown
                  TheBoogeyDown commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Killer! Please reach out if you ever think you'd consider unloading some.

              • #10
                Very impressive collection. The Beatles in 7.5ips, Wow!

                Larry (who has over 500 7.5ips R2R tapes - but almost all classical)
                Analog- VPIClassic3-3DArm,SoundsmithZephyrII+MiyajimaZeroMono, 2xAmpex ATR-102,Doshi3.0 BottleheadPhonoPre,Herron VTPH-2A
                Dig Rip-Pyramix,IzotopeRX3Adv,Mykerinos,PacMicroModel2
                Dig Play-mchNADAC, LampiPac, Roon, HQP, Oppo105
                Electronics-Herron 360Pre,CJ MET1mchPre, Cary2A3monoamps
                Speakers-AvantgardeDuosLR,3SolosC,LR,RR
                Other-512Engineer/Marutani Symmetrical Power, ArtKelmGround1, AudioDiskVinylCleaner,AirTightRecordFlat, Scott Rust Interconnects,
                Music-15KRecs(90%classical),1KR2Rtapes,50TBrips

                Comment


                • #11
                  This one is sure sounding good right now

                  TAPE: Studer A807, A810; Revox B77 MkII; Tascam BR-20; Technics RS-1700; Pioneer RT-707, RT-909
                  VINYL: Pioneer PL-50LII/Benz LP-S MR/ModWright PH 9.0; Denon DP59-L/Dynavector 20xH
                  DIGITAL: Bryston SP-3, MacMini > Oppo Sonica/Pioneer N-50
                  SPEAKERS: B&W Nautilus 800, Pioneer DSS-9
                  AMPS: Cary SLP-05/Sunfire Signature 600, Pioneer SX-1980

                  Comment


                  • #12
                    Hi Sam:

                    It's been a long time since you fixed my TEAC X-2000R.
                    Happy to see you here.

                    Ki

                    Comment


                    • Skylab
                      Skylab commented
                      Editing a comment
                      You may be confusing me, Skylab/Rob, with Sam Palermo who posts elsewhere as Skywave. I know Sam - he has serviced/aligned 5 reel decks for me

                  • #13
                    Ok. Close it was.

                    Comment


                    • #14
                      Another especially good sounding commercial 7.5 ips 4-track tape:
                      Miles Davis - Miles Smiles
                      Columbia 7.5 ips 4-track stereo reel tape

                      TAPE: Studer A807, A810; Revox B77 MkII; Tascam BR-20; Technics RS-1700; Pioneer RT-707, RT-909
                      VINYL: Pioneer PL-50LII/Benz LP-S MR/ModWright PH 9.0; Denon DP59-L/Dynavector 20xH
                      DIGITAL: Bryston SP-3, MacMini > Oppo Sonica/Pioneer N-50
                      SPEAKERS: B&W Nautilus 800, Pioneer DSS-9
                      AMPS: Cary SLP-05/Sunfire Signature 600, Pioneer SX-1980

                      Comment


                      • #15
                        Had a lot of quarter tracks 25 years ago. Remember that a number of the RCA classicals were very good. Also the Epic's (Szell with Cleveland). Seem to remember that "someone" started cataloging them on the web but....

                        Charles

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